An inspiring young play write, Kit Zanetti, living in an apartment in Greenwich Village, is invited to tea at Aunt Lu’s upstairs apartment. What she expects is a rather dull afternoon with a stylish but older neighbor. However, the afternoon proves to be quite interesting, as she listens to Aunt Lu’s story about Lucia.
Lucia is one of five children of a successful Italian immigrant and his wife. She is close to her mother, adores and is adored by her father, and her four brothers are loving and protective. Lucia loves her job in fashion, sewing designer clothes, and is engaged to her childhood sweetheart, Dante. She is a modern woman of the fifties and believes she can have it all.
When she meets a handsome sophisticated man she is tempted by the life he offers. A life of high society and luxury. Her relationship with John Talbot makes Lucia question the ways of her large traditional Italian family.
John Talbot has secrets and when they become public Lucia learns the truth about John, who he is and who he is not. The scandal that could destroy her and all she loves brings her to a place of decisions. She must decide what is important, what she wants, where she belongs, and ultimately who she is.
The fifties were the beginning of change for women. In the forties women were forced by circumstances to be independent, then in the fifties they were expected to go back to the way things were before World War II. Lucia’s story tells of some of the struggles faced by the modern woman of that time. It also shows the importance of strong family ties and working to keep them from unraveling.